Nip it in the bud!
After an exceptional week of summer-like sunny weather, our vines have finally come to life!
This brings us to the next task, which is to begin nipping off unwanted buds from the vines. As we want all the vines’ energy to go towards growing particular shoots that we can later train, we need to nip off any buds and sucker shoots that are growing in other places. For example, in the photo below, there are a number of various shoots growing from the base of the vine.
Therefore, we need to remove these shoots so that the only ones remaining are those growing from the previous years shoot that we had pruned back a couple months ago, like in the photo below.
For those vines that had reached the wire and were thicker than a pencil, and so were pruned back only until the wire, we simply nip all the buds along the vine leaving four near the top. From those four buds left, we will later choose the two strongest shoots to train to run horizontally along the wire.
As they are still young, we can simply pinch the buds off with our fingers.
Unfortunately, with the growth of vines also comes the growth of weeds. So needless to say we have spent some hours weeding these past weeks. However, because of the thorough work we did last year, it has been a lot easier to manage… leaving us some time sit back and enjoy delicious bottle of wine under this beautiful May sunshine!